Attendance & Punctuality

One of the most important things affecting a child's progress at school is regular attendance. For a child to gain most benefit from education, it is vital that parents work in partnership with the school to encourage good attendance and punctuality.

School Attendance

Attendance and punctuality is a life skill and in school we strive to support our pupils to maintain high levels of attendance. The national average school attendance for primary schools is 96%; this is the MINMUM attendance figure that we, as a school, are expected to achieve by the Government and Ofsted.

Parents have a legal responsibility to ensure their children have an education.

Section 444 (1) of the Education Act 1996 states "if a child of compulsory school age who is a registered pupil at a school fails to attend regularly at the school, his/her parent is guilty of an offence."

For the purposes of education law, the definition of 'parental responsibility' lies with whomever the child resides with; this could be one parent, both parents or carer/s.


Absence from school

The 2013 regulation amendments make clear that a headteacher may NOT grant any leave of absence (holiday) during term time unless there are 'exceptional circumstances'. The amendments give parents NO entitlement to take their child out of school for a holiday in term time.

If you need to request a leave of absence for your child/ren, please complete the form below. Completion of the form does NOT guarantee the leave of absence will be authorised. You may be asked to attend a meeting in school to discuss your child/ren's attendance following a leave of absence submission. It is important to have read and fully understood the school's attendance policy; this can be found on the website under 'school information/policies'.


Authorised absence

  • Illness: if a child is unable to attend school due to illness, it is expected that parents/carers will provide an explanation on the first day the absence occurs. School should be informed by 9:20am either by telephone, leaving a voice message or personally calling into the school office. School should be kept updated of any on-going absence on a daily basis. If your child is suffering from a vomiting or diarrhoea related illness, they should not return to school until 48 hours after their last bout.
  • Special circumstance: very occasionally there is a situation that prevents a child from attending school (e.g. bereavement of close family member). The register will be marked with an authorised absence code in this instance
  • Authorised term time holiday: in exceptional circumstances the federation headteacher may authorise a leave of absence (e.g. close family wedding, special celebration).
  • Medical appointment: if your child has a medical appointment, please contact the school to advise the time of the appointment and expected time to return to school. Please bring the appointment letter/card so this may be noted on the pupil's record


Unauthorised absence

  • Term time holiday: school expects that parents take all holidays during the 14 weeks per year that children are not in school. If you plan to take your child out of school during term time, please complete a leave of absence form and return to school



The main school gates for years 2 - 6 children are opened at 8:45am until 8:55am.

The reception and year 1 gates are opened at 8:50am until 9:00am.

If your child arrives to school after these times they will need to be accompanied by an adult into school via the school office where they will need to be signed into school on the 'sign in' board.

Pupils who are consistently late are disrupting not only their own education but also that of other children in their class. Where persistent lateness gives cause for concern, further action may be taken. Cheshire East Council can issue a fixed penalty notice if a child is late, after the registers close, for 10 sessions or more over two consecutive half terms.

Every second counts:

  • 5 minutes late each day means three whole days of education lost each year
  • attendance affects learning
  • attendance affects future outcomes
  • attendance affects well being and a sense of belonging


Fixed penalty notices

Parents/carers should be aware that 10 or more unauthorised late marks over 2 consecutive half terms may lead to a fixed penalty notice being issued by the local authority

Parents/carers should be aware that 10 or more unauthorised absence marks over 2 consecutive half terms, where no reason for absence is provided or when school has not authorised a term time leave of absence request, may lead to a fixed penalty notice being issued by the local authority

The fixed penalty notice is currently £60 per parent per pupil payable within 21 days. Failure to pay within this time period results in the penalty being increased to £120 per parent per pupil. If this further penalty is not paid within the next 7 days (i.e. 28 days from the issue of the original penalty) this will lead to court action against parents/carers by the local authority


For more information and documentation please visit the School Policies webpage


Cledford Primary School, George VI Ave, Middlewich, CW10 0DD